Creating Change from Within: The Department of Sociology and Anthropology Certification

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This winter, the Department of Sociology and Anthropology became a certified office in the Sustainable Office Program (SOP). They received a silver certification by taking initiative and joining the self-guided, independent, certification program. The department began to think more sustainably when they made a goal of reducing their paper purchases by 10 percent each year. 

Liz Hill, from the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, took initiative and became the Sustainable Office Representative for the department. Liz became the main point of contact between her office and the Office of Sustainability. Liz, along with the entire department states, “In this era of global environmental change, we have a moral obligation to reduce our impacts in our homes and at work. One challenge we face is the social and institutional demands beyond our control that force us to use more resources than we prefer, like requirements for reports or documents printed on paper. This is why change has to happen at every organizational level, from the individual to the office and the institution at large.” Lehigh makes many efforts to improve sustainability on an institutional level. The SOP encourages offices to further the progress.

The Department of Sociology and Anthropology had such a positive experience with the SOP that they are looking to recertify in the future to achieve a higher level of certification. Any office that is certified can choose to recertify their office once they have reevaluated their current practices and set new sustainability goals. For more information on the SOP visit or register here.